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What You Need to Know About Car Batteries

an image of a car battery in an engine bay

Almost every component of a car is an important one, and this is no different for your car’s battery. However, when it comes to batteries, there is a lot you need to know – and plenty you can do to help elongate the life of yours.

Here at Ken’s Autos, we are experts in automotive care. Established in 1976, we now have garages across Croydon, so we use our experience to tell you what you need to know about car batteries.

Prolonging Battery Life

On average, a car battery should last around 5 years. Like everything, though, there are things that you can do to help reach this target – or even slightly exceed it. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

The weather is a big factor in the lifespan of a battery, whether exceedingly cold or warm. This is usually due to liquid electrolyte solution, which is what helps a battery keep its charge and can either freeze in the cold or evaporate in the heat, shortening the life of your battery.

The worst thing for a battery is discharging, or when the charge runs out. This can happen for a number of reasons – including leaving the lights on overnight or otherwise, but can also gradually happen on its own – especially when left in storage and not used regularly. Once this happens, even just once, the battery is not the same and will not last as long as it should.

Vibrations from general use can shake plates and loosen connections in your car battery, which reduces its life, but you can help prevent this rattling with a properly-fitted hold down.

Short trips don’t give the battery enough time to fully charge, which can damage its life. You can use float chargers or battery maintainers to help prevent this, though.

Start-stop technology, while great for fuel efficiency, can be harmful for batteries that aren’t optimised for this process – you’ll need to make sure to pay for a more efficient batter to compensate.

Is it Even the Battery?

The main diagnosis for a car that won’t start is that the battery is flat, but it’s not always the main culprit. However, if your battery is performing as it should but your car won’t start, it might be another issue. For example, a non-starting car can be caused by a range of things, such as the starter motor, the alternator, or the fuel injection pumps/spark plugs.

A Great Start

While this isn’t everyone there is to know about car batteries, it’s a great start for being able to help elongate the life of yours. One final key piece of information to remember is that, when your battery does die, it needs to be disposed of responsibly due to the harmful chemicals used – this means either taking it to a dedicated recycling centre or speaking to a local, reputable scrap yard.

Ken’s Autos

If you would like to get your battery checked, have a new one installed, or require any other care for your car – contact Ken’s Autos today. You can call us on 01883 622 069 (Warlingham) or 0208 763 0102 (Whyteleafe), or fill out our simple contact form and we will be able to help with what you need.